On Taking a Leap

by @AnnieDaylon

 Angel the Clown, a once-upon-a-time busker on Granville Island.

Angel the Clown, a once-upon-a-time busker on Granville Island.

When I first moved to Vancouver, I was in awe of buskers. How on earth did they summon the courage to perform in the street? I wanted to try it but I had to talk, no, trick myself into it.

Vancouver’s Granville Island Public Market is a well-known venue for street performers. Transportation to it from my place of residence meant a trip on the Granville Island ferry. One day (not in costume), I put my soprano recorder into my purse and counted out enough coins for a one-way trip to Granville Island. In order to pay for the return trip, I would have to park my butt someplace, pull out that recorder, and play a few tunes. 

Upon arrival at Granville Island, I strolled through the market. Then I sat at an entrance and, trembling something fierce, I extracted my recorder from my purse. I put the beret I was wearing onto the ground, shaped it into a coin receptacle, and started in. I don’t recall all of the tunes, but one of them was certainly the familiar “Early one morning just as the sun was rising…”  

I have to say that there could have been no sound as encouraging as the jingle of coins. Once the first few dropped, I continued playing, all the while counting coins out of the corner of my eye. When I was certain I had enough money to pay my way home, I put my recorder away, picked up my beret, and, with the stealth of a flash mob member, slid back into the crowd. 

After that, I borrowed a clown costume which my sister had created for herself for Hallowe’en and spent a few summer afternoons as Angel the Clown, a children’s entertainer on Granville Island. It wasn’t difficult for me to come up with material–recorder tunes, action songs, sing-a-longs– as I had already spent time as an elementary music teacher.

The memory of that summer is a fond one for me, not only because I enjoyed the experience but because it was one which paved the way for my leap-taking philosophy. As an author, propelled by dreams, I regularly thrust myself forward on the road to writing, always trusting that there will be someone or something there to support the journey.

Do you have any stories about taking a leap? Please share…

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My best to you,

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Writing Goals for 2014

by @AnnieDaylon


Today, as the tide slips over the release date of my novel, Castles in the Sand, I am setting goals for 2014.


I started by listing accomplishments of 2013, an activity I recommend. I discovered that, despite bouts of doubt (do you have those ‘am I doing enough’ moments??) I accomplished a lot. Included on my list:

  • publishing a novel;

  • working with a partner (accomplished author, Michael Hiebert) to organize a book launch party;

  • attending conferences;

  • blogging and tweeting on a regular basis;

  • facilitating workshops;

  • attending Federation of BC Writers three-day writers’ retreat;

  • diving into technology (almost drowned… still here!),

  • learning that I must pick and choose my path because there are so many options and there is no way can I do everything. (Must keep it simple.)


With that last point in mind, I am listing just three goal categories. In order of importance, they are:


  • Write first!  Write regularly. (Novel first, always! I intend to finish, and market, my historical suspense novel.)

  • Write short stories for contests. (Love the contest concept; it is a vehicle for honing writing craft.)

  • Write a non-fiction book about writing. (Have learned a lot; intend to share.)


  • Read, Read, Read!  Read up. Read down.  (I laughed recently when I received an email from Goodreads congratulating me on having read two books in 2013.  The reality is that I read a minimum of two books a week. 🙂 Since I already keep an alphabetical list of everything I read, I will transfer more of that info to Goodreads in 2014.)

  • Read more Indie Authors (I am one; should support same. Mea culpa.)

  • Write a few short reviews.


  • Continue to share info via Twitter and Blog. Am focusing on these two because, like I said, I can’t do everything. However, I will also use other media, such as Linked In & Pinterest, and, of course, Goodreads.

  • Hire for Tech issues. (In many cases, time trumps money; I cannot spend hours trolling tech forums when I can spend a few dollars employing tech wizards.)

  • Learn to do Webinars.

  • Get help with marketing. (Not sure what this looks like yet but am putting it out there.)

So, there it is. A list of goals. Seems simple enough. And that’s the point: to keep it simple. Simplicity allows for success, for change, and for adaptation to whatever rolls in with the tides of 2014.

What are your writing goals for 2014?


My best to you for 2014 and always,

Annie Signature Light Blue